[dms-discuss] Maker Faire notes from other Hackerspaces
rob at omsoft.com
Wed May 21 17:17:07 PDT 2014
I really enjoyed reading this. Its an excellent contribution.
Thanks for taking your time to do it.
On 5/21/2014 12:34 PM, sarah schrupp wrote:
> Got to chat up other Hackerspace folks. Full disclosure, few data
> points; not a tinkerer, so questions were about running/organizing a
> community, and also, don't have friends in other communities like some
> of you might.
> Take home points were derived from people who strongly believe in the
> hacker community concept; many were still wildly enthusiastic, some
> were still believers but no longer, wide-eyed but a few were nearing
> mental collapse, yet still clinging to the positives of what a hacker
> community could offer.
> Surprisingly, financing according to several, was not the biggest
> issue. In fact, some mentioned that eventually, the money started
> streaming in, but rather, keeping the organization healthy was the
> biggest hurdle.
> Some advice from volunteers/organizers:
> *Take the opportunity to build structure into a small organization
> before it gets too large, and don't be afraid to moderate policy as
> needs change. * No policies and no enforcement leads to chaos as well
> as creates physically unsafe and socially toxic environment.
> (Stories about people not being willing to engage law enforcement when
> really necessary. Other related issues, lack of machine/tool safety
> tests, pets, squatters, drugs, theft and whether 24/7 ends up being
> good idea. Some spaces will not permit sleeping, for instance.
> Another suggested eventual space location could be out of city center
> but adjacent to bus stop, for example, become a destination, not a
> pass through.)
> *Partner with other non-profits.* They gave many instances where
> reciprocation had been invaluable, sharing funds,grants, reaching
> public, getting support, trading resources et cetera.
> *Consider core objective of this hackerspace; *what does this
> community need? If not much equipment to meet goals, then easier to
> insure and maintain safety. In one instance, the "big tools" are the
> 3-D printers (upgraded from DMS ones, the $2K models) and some cnc
> mills. (Could concentrate on fundraising just for those specific
> pieces of equipment.)
> *Collect but screen donations else DMC will become toxic waste site.
> * Be clear about what DMC wants to accept - for example, old Apple II
> computers are interesting and could be restored for a museum but are
> not really a part of the DMC vision. Some donations, like a
> jackhammer and compressor, are too large or out of scope for
> hackerspace, but would be perfect for a partner non-profit, i.e.
> habitat for humanity, who later might help construct a wall or something.
> *Focus on youth and families if possible to create a healthier
> financial and social environment. * Kids and families bring money,
> safety, civility, grant financing, volunteers and resources into the
> community. Parents will spend a lot of money helping their children
> learn but won't participate if the environment is unsafe or otherwise
> toxic. Also, many volunteer mentors derive pleasure from working with
> kids and teens.
> *Visit other hackerspaces and see what they are doing well and what
> they wish they could change. * (I can compile a list if anyone is
> interested, but there are many.)
> Example of Happy, Well-run, Non-profit Hackerspace (according to other
> hackers, not me):
> http://www.hackerdojo.com/About (Mountain View)
> Example of small, For-Profit (opened this space due to hacks in the
> common area of their lodging house where they didn't want it):
> http://rockitcolabs.com/makerspace (San Francisco)
> Example of everything permitted, financially sound, largely
> disfunctional and socially toxic, non-profit (ran across the
> accompanying tumblr which seems to corroborate and enhance what I heard):
> https://www.noisebridge.net/wiki/About (San Francisco)
> Btw, people had made great contacts and accomplished things at
> Noisebridge but many had fled elsewhere due to safety, theft and
> anarchy. NB no longer seems to have a discussion page. (Ran across a
> posting about the FBI looking into their TOR network with regards to
> the Mandiant report etc.) Lots going on there; also, lots going on
> there. Maybe you have friends that have used that space?
> Be interested to hear what you have learned. Seems like charging for
> space membership filters out some behaviors. Sponsorships could also
> be made for parties who can't afford. Otherwise, does DMS's CNC mill
> just become a good place to make a copy of a DO NOT Duplicate UCDavis
> Schlage key?
> Anyone have friends at other hacker spaces? Be happy to contact the
> folks I met and ask any of your questions. Also, they seem to know
> the folks at other communities.
> Davis Makerspace Discuss mailing list
> Discuss at lists.davismakerspace.org
UCD Class of 96
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